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Procedures for etching, staining and/or engraving copper and aluminum sheets?


Hi, I've been doing art work on aluminum and copper sheets, about 1/4 mm thick (reposee or hand embossed/pressed relief?)for a few years and have been looking for ways of obtaining different tones, textures or even color changes in the metals' surface. I know this can be achieved, to some degree, through the usage of acids, but I have no knowledge about their handling, preparation, effects, risks, etc. I would really appreciate any help/suggestions as to which acids would be more appropriate to use on aluminum and copper (as many as possible) and perhaps healthy and safe ways to handle them. Asides from acids, would there be other processes to stain the metals without paint?

Thanks! Claudia Romero

Claudia Romero
- Monterrey, N.L., Mexico

As a hobbyist, I was interested in modifying the color in copper sheeting and letter 23393 addressed this but I cannot find a response to that question (from 2003) posted in your archives. Was an answer ever given and if so, how can I access it?

Thank you,

Coleen Grillo
hobbyist - Corpus Christi, Texas

Ed. note: Hello Coleen. This is a public Q&A forum rather than a free consulting service. That means the site operators don't necessarily answer the questions, rather we post any responses offered by the public. This question has no response because no reader responded. Sometimes the reason is that a question is repetitive and the readers have already answered it a host of times. See our FAQ on patinas for copper. Good luck!

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